Category Archives: science

Another day, another derp

Not the sharpest knife in the drawer:

‘Do you even science, bro?’ Neil deGrasse Tyson tries to crap on Batman, beclowns HIMSELF instead

ndtbatmandouche_thumb

Umm…hate to break it to you, Neil, but get this: “blind as a bat” is just a figure of speech.  They don’t see as well as we do, but they’re not blind.

batnotblind_2

Alcohol abuse…in space!

1445869708280I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of hashers suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced:

Comet Lovejoy appears to be a well-stocked bar in space

If you are looking for a good time, it might be worth stopping by Comet Lovejoy.

That’s because the famous comet is releasing huge amounts of alcohol as well as a type of sugar in space, according to NASA. This marks the first time that ethyl alcohol, the same type found in alcoholic beverages, has been observed in a comet.

“We found that comet Lovejoy was releasing as much alcohol as in at least 500 bottles of wine every second during its peak activity,” Nicolas Biver of the Paris Observatory, France and the lead author of a paper on the discovery published in Science Advances, said in a statement.

It also raises the prospect that comets could have been a source of the complex organic molecules required for the emergence of life. The team found 21 different organic molecules in gas from the comet, including ethyl alcohol and glycolaldehyde, a simple sugar.

Wondering why the weather’s been cooler lately?

winter_is_comingThe sun is unusually free of sunspots, and a set of coincidences in timing could lead to a “Maunder minimum” in the next decade:

Is a mini ICE AGE coming? Scientists warn the sun will ‘sleep’ in 2020

A new study claims to have cracked predicting solar cycles – and says that between 2020 and 2030 solar cycles will cancel each other out.

This, they say, will lead to a phenomenon known as the ‘Maunder minimum’ – which has previously been known as a mini ice age when it hit between 1646 and 1715, even causing London’s River Thames to freeze over.

The new model of the Sun’s solar cycle is producing unprecedentedly accurate predictions of irregularities within the Sun’s 11-year heartbeat.

It draws on dynamo effects in two layers of the Sun, one close to the surface and one deep within its convection zone.

Predictions from the model suggest that solar activity will fall by 60 per cent during the 2030s to conditions last seen during the ‘mini ice age’ that began in 1645, according to the results presented by Prof Valentina Zharkova at the National Astronomy Meeting in Llandudno.

Get ready for the warmists to be called out

Bringing light to a subject that has seen more heat than light…the Grünsturmabteilung won’t like this one little bit.  In fact, they’re already busy in the comments:

Climate Change Mythology Questioned By American Physical Society

Junk Science: Climate change “deniers,” as global warm-mongers call those who think empirical evidence is more reliable than computer models, may soon count among their number a 50,000-strong body of physicists.

At the risk of being accused of embracing what alarmists call the flat-earth view of climate change, the American Physical Society has appointed a balanced, six-person committee to review its stance on so-called climate change that includes three distinguished skeptics: Judith Curry, John Christy and Richard Lindzen. Their credentials are impressive.

Christy is director of the Earth System Science Center at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, and was a lead author of the 2001 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Curry is a professor and chairwoman of the School of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Lindzen, an Alfred P. Sloan professor of meteorology at MIT from 1983 to 2013, is currently a distinguished senior fellow in the Center for the Study of Science at the Cato Institute.

A question the American Physical Society panel will address is one we ask repeatedly: Why wasn’t the current global temperature stasis, with no discernible change in the past 15 years, not predicted by any of the climate models used by the IPCC, part of the United Nations?

The APS announcement lists among its questions to be answered: “How long must the stasis persist before there would be a firm declaration of a problem with the models?

In a nod to the likelihood that nature, not man, calls the shots, another APS audit question asks the panel: “What do you see as the likelihood of solar influences beyond TSI (total solar irradiance)? Is it coincidence that the stasis has occurred during the weakest solar cycle (i.e., sunspot activity) in about a century?